Wesleyan announced that it will now offer a part-time, non-residential undergraduate degree, the Bachelor of Liberal Studies (BLS). This provides a flexible, affordable path to earning a bachelor’s degree for students who meet Wesleyan’s admission standards but are unable to commit to living on campus for a variety of reasons.
The Office of Continuing Studies and the BLS Faculty Governing Board announced the BLS degree in an email to faculty and staff on April 9. Staff, as well as spouses and domestic partners of faculty and staff, who are interested in earning a bachelor’s degree, are encouraged to apply. The Human Resources website contains information on tuition benefits for eligible employees, spouses, and domestic partners.
The program is open to the general public and may be an attractive option for adult learners who hold a job or have family responsibilities. BLS students take courses on a per-credit basis, and normal completion time for the degree is within six years of matriculation.
In addition, the New England Commission on Higher Education (NECHE), Wesleyan’s accrediting body, has approved the establishment of additional instructional locations at Cheshire and York correctional institutions, so that incarcerated students enrolled in Wesleyan’s Center for Prison Education (CPE) will have an opportunity to earn BLS degrees.
“It’s been such an honor to be a part of the development of the BLS program at Wesleyan,” said Nicole Stanton, incoming provost and a member of the BLS faculty governing board. “With the approval of this new initiative, we will be able to make a Wesleyan education accessible to many more people, expand the critical work of our Center for Prison Education, and deepen our ties to our communities.”